May 16 (GMM) Axed and disgraced former F1 race director Michael Masi could make a comeback.
While many applauded the Australian’s forced departure after the controversy of the 2021 championship showdown in Abu Dhabi, new FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem insists he hasn’t sacked Masi.
“He had a personal overload – safety delegate as well as race director,” he told the Daily Mail. “He made a mistake. It is not as if we said it is the end of Masi with the FIA.”
Ben Sulayem said Masi’s handling of the safety car period and final laps in Abu Dhabi at the end of the ultra-intense 2021 battle amounted to “human error”.
“I spoke to him two days ago,” said the FIA president. “I have no personal issue. I don’t hate anyone.
“Michael is there and we might use him. I didn’t say we were getting rid of him. I said we might use him. He may be in a good place to use. We are open to everything.”
Indeed, Ben Sulayem says the FIA deserves the bulk of the blame for the 2021 controversy, insisting the former “race structure” needed to be fixed.
“And though we have brought in two new race directors, I wouldn’t say we have got it all right yet,” he insisted. “This lack of people in the FIA needs to be addressed.
“I would like to see a minimum of three race directors, ideally by the beginning of next year.”